Ronda Kramer

Before proceeding with our trailers, there’s yet another character revealed by the home video version of Spider-Man: Homecoming. During Midtown News, the anchors Betty Brant and Jason Ionello pay their homages to a retiring professor, Ronda Kramer (actress unknown, but she’s seen in picture only). The teacher left because of her mother’s health condition, and apparently everybody’s sad for her departure, but Jason. In the comics, Ronda is a secondary character at best, appearing just in a couple of issues of Web of Spider-Man, but she’s not a professor: she’s a student. Let’s see together.

Not much is known about Ronda Kramer’s early life, nothing at all actually. She was born and raised in New York City, possibly in Queens, and she lived a pretty normal life, for all we know. As a teenager she attended Midtown High School, where, if she wasn’t the most popular girl in the school, she wasn’t a nobody either, and she had quite a number of friends. She spent most of her time with her boyfriend Jake Dorman, a star athlete and the school’s bully (many teachers saw in him a new Flash Thompson, under many points of view). Despite being the girlfriend of the most popular guy in school, Ronda was quite a humble and caring girl, and she always tried to quell Jake’s “natural calling” for bullying the nerds. She even stood up for Steve Petty, an egghead and a sociopath simply unable to bond with anyone. Despite her efforts, however, Jake always mocked Steve, and once he even broke his glasses during a fight. Unfortunately for Jake, Steve was a brilliant engineer, son of the creator of the Living Computer, and he sent his father’s creation to the athlete to exact revenge. Luckily enough, Professor Peter Parker managed to stop the A.I., saving Jake’s and Ronda’s lives.

The nightmare was seemingly short-lived (and over) for Ronda and her boyfriend, and they resumed their lives as usual. Some time after that “incident”, however, Steve took Ronda in the school parking lot by night, and they started making out; some energy flashes drew the couple’s attention, and the two investigated their source. They found Petty in the school lab, trying to activate an exoskeleton he had built to take revenge on Steve: as the lights were turn on, electricity ran through Steve’s exoskeleton, mutating him. He had become the monstrous Phreak. Ronda and Jake escaped, while the Phreak went after Professor Parker, whom he perceived as a traitor. Spider-Man intervened to save Parker’s wife, Mary Jane, but he was unable to stop Phreak. Ronda, feeling guilty, talked to Jake, and made him realise how much of the monster’s mayhem was his fault. Convinced by his girlfriend, Jake reached Phreak, who was battling Spider-Man, and apologised to him. Hearing his nemesis say he was sorry was enough to startle Steve long enough for Spider-Man to knock him out. When the police arrive, both Ronda and Jake admitted their part of responsibility in what had happened, and were taken away along with Petty: it was time for them all to grow up.

Ronda Kramer is a high school student who surely enjoys the popularity and the “fame” coming from her “social status” in the school, but who however shows to be more mature and responsible than many girls her age. Instead of supporting her boyfriend even when he acts like a total jerk, she stands for the ones in trouble, even if this means to oppose her beloved Jake.

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Barry Hapgood

Spider-Man: Homecoming has been released in homevideo, and with that we have the confirmation of yet another minor character appearing in the movie. When Peter Parker and Ned Leeds examine the Chitauri artifact they found, they’re doing it during the shop class, and the teacher “supervising” them (actually solving puzzles on his own) is Barry Hapgood, portrayed by John Penick. In the comics, Hapgood attends the same school as Peter, of course, but not as a teacher, rather than a fellow student…and, for once, he’s one of the few who doesn’t torment the bullied young man. Let’s see together.

Not much is known about Barry Hapgood: born and raised in New York City, he grew up to become a handsome young man, a blonde athletic guy who surely didn’t have any popularity problem the moment he started attending Midtown High School. In the new school, Hapgood soon realised it was all a matter of roles to play, as every student would have been defined by a single characteristic that would have accompanied him or her for the rest of the years there: there was the athlete, the bully, the pretty and vain girl, the nerd… As for himself, Barry found out many people found his jokes funny, and that’s what he eventually became, the school’s cut-up, always making jokes and playing pranks. Of course, not everybody had been as “lucky” as him in the “role assignment”, and during shop class Barry met Peter Parker, a science geek who was extremely talented, but also scrawny and unpopular, constantly targeted by the local football star and bully Flash Thompson. Barry never defended Peter, of course, and he mostly spent time with his friend Clyde, minding his own business.

Time passed, and Barry Hapgood lived some of the liveliest years in Midtown High, witnessing the kids’ passion for the new superheroes that everyday seemed to be born in the city. Eventually, highschool came to an end, and quite ironically, the only thing that Barry actually remembered fondly about the lessons were the hours in the shop class: in college, he ended up studying electronics, and he eventually became a skilled engineer. Life proceeded as it normally did, and the only person Barry kept in contact with was his best pal Clyde, who on the opposite didn’t accomplish much in his life. Barry was quite intrigued when the school organised a reunion, and he gladfully accepted the invitation (along with Clyde, of course). The reunion was quite funny, and the moment Peter Parker arrived Barry was the one who welcomed him. He was impressed to learn that his former classmate, rather than “winning a Nobel prize” as he jocked, was the official photographer for the Daily Bugle, and he remarked how thrilling it must have been to take all those impressive pictures of Spider-Man. For once, Parker was the object of the admiration of his classmates rather than of their insults, and it was Clyde who instead got mocked by Barry for never attending classes. When Flash Thompson arrived, Barry warned Peter, but he was quite surprise to see that the two of them in the meanwhile had become the best of friends. Truly, time passed for everybody, apparently.

Barry Hapgood is basically a good man: funny and smart, he’s a charming and succesful engineer who underwent quite an evolution from the school joker he used to be. Among his peers, he’s one of the ones who realised for first that everybody, eventually, needs to grow up.

Anne Marie Hoag

Finally, we reached the last character appearing in Spider-Man: Homecoming, actually one of the very first seen in the movie. During the prologue, Adrian Toomes and his team are collecting debris and Chitauri relics from the site of the Battle of New York, but they’re interrupted by a woman who claims to be in control of the entire operation: that’s Anne Marie Hoag, portrayed by Tyne Daly, the director of Damage Control (a new department financed by Stark who takes care of removing alien, supernatural or high tech dangerous stuff from superheroes battles’ sites, and to rebuild any damaged property). Considering that it’s been quite a long time a Damage Control tv series has been rumored, it may not be the last time we see Hoag in action, especially now that the character has been entrusted to an actress like Daly. Anyway, as usual, let’s take a look at the original Anne Marie.

Anne Marie Hoag’s story is not an easy one to tell nor to find, as she’s always stated that someone’s personal history shouldn’t be made available for “public consumption”, and kept nearly everything from her early life secret. We know she was born in New HavenConnecticut, but we know nothing of her family; she graduated at Barnard College, but following that we have little or no clues about her works and activities: she worked for a while with Amnesty International, and she even obtained a position at the Smithsonian Museum and at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, but the details are, again, unknown. In some way or another, she managed to become a curiously influential figure in New York City, with power enough to put pressure on the administration to face up to the increasing number of clashes among superhumans occuring in the country, battles that inevitably caused enormous damage to public and private property. Hoag was allowed to found an enterprise specialised in cleaning up the mess left behind by superheroes and supervillains, taking care of dangerous items, of securing the selected areas and of repairing the damaged property…as long as she could find someone willing to finance the entire operation, of course. Hoag amused everyone by finding two of the best possible investors, who found themselves partners into an uneasy alliance: on one side Tony Stark, the Avenger Iron Man, on the other Wilson Fisk, secretly the ultimate mob boss Kingpin. With Stark and Fisk owning half of the company stocks each, Damage Control was born, and Anne Marie Hoag set the enterprise’s headquarters in Flatiron Building. Authoritative and intimidating, Hoag put together a team of professionals she treated with an iron fist, but who she deeply cared for, arriving to the point of risking a bullet for them when Damage Control was threatened by The Punisher. In a matter of a few weeks, Damage Control was already famous all over the nation, as they showed an unprecedented professionality and ability in dealing with superhumans’ leftovers.

Under Hoag’s leadership, Damage Control made quite a name for itself, intervening even in cosmic-level issues (such as when they cleaned up after a battle with Galactus and the Silver Surfer), befriending some heroes (most notably Spider-Man, the X-Men and the New Warriors) and nearly entering in conflict with others (unfortunately, Hulk included). Hoag proved to be the right woman for the right position as she even tried to force a man like Doctor Doom to pay for the damage he had inflicted to New York while battling the Fantastic Four. Due to her experience and her proved professionality, Hoag was offered a job from the government in the Commission of Superhuman Activity, a position she accepted, leaving in charge of Damage Control her protege Robin Chapel. This change in the command chain, however, nearly caused the end of Damage Control: Stark didn’t want to be associated with Fisk anymore, while the other didn’t trust Chapel’s leadership, so they both sold their quotas; as a result, the rival Carlton Company took control of DC, and revolutionized the company’s methods and style to make it more profitable (angering a lot of historial workers in the process). Once again, Anne Marie took the matter in her hands to save her former employees and the company she had created, and she exacted a favour from an old friend of hers, Nick Fury, the director of S.H.I.E.L.D., convincing him to invest in the company. As a bonus, Fury found out that the entire selling operation was put up by Fisk, who planned to buy the company for cheap later: along with other infamous supervillains, namely Doctor Doom, MagnetoWizardMandarin and Red Skull, Kingpin also organised an all-out attack on the superhero community. The attack failed, but Damage Control was hired to clean up the mess, and Fisk earned an enormous amount of money as Damage Control was his once again. Seeing what was happening to her company, but unable to resume her role as director, Hoag stepped in as the President of Damage Control, while the position of CEO was taken by some Walter Declun, an unscrupolous man who later financed the terrorist Nitro. As soon as the mutant Wolverine informed her of what Declun was up to, Hoag fired him, regaining full control of Damage Control. It was time the company came back to be what she had meant it to be from the very beginning.

Anne Marie Hoag is a no-nonsense, authoritative and mean woman, who’s able to instill fear in whoever she speaks to, and to command even the most influent people in the country. Beneath the facade of a harsh and uncompromising enterpreneur, however, lies a woman who cares deeply for her employees, and who’s truly dedicated to the mission of bringing order and solace where chaos and destruction hit, a mission she’s created Damage Control to accomplish.

Doris Raxton

We’re almost at the end of the characters appeared in Spider-Man: Homecoming, and now we meet Doris Toomes, portrayed by Garcelle Beauvais. Spoiler alert: in the movie, she’s Adrian Toomes‘ wife and Lizs mother, and she’s first seen as Peter Parker comes to her house to get Liz out for homecoming (and that’s the moment he realizes the girl he loves is the daughter of his worst enemy). Doris didn’t know anything of her husband’s secret activity, and when Adrian is arrested she moves to Oregon with her daughter. In the comics, Doris is indeed Liz’s mother, but she’s got nothing to do with Adrian Toomes, albeit she’s connected by blood to another supervillain. Let’s see together.

Nothing is known about Doris Raxton‘s early life (not even if “Raxton” is her maiden name or if she took it from her first husband). She was most likely born in New York City, where she lived and she met a man who may or may not have been called Raxton. As it usually happens, the two fell in love and got married, and after a while Doris gave birth to her first son, Mark Raxton, a smart and intelligent kid who became the centre of her life. By the time Mark was born, however, her marriage was already at an end, and it was inevitable that, sooner or later, said end was made official by istitutions: Doris divorced her husband, and she left with Mark, looking for a new start in the city. Alone with a kid, Doris did her best to be a single mother, but it surely was a tiring task for her. From time to time, she tried to pull the plug and relax with some friends, and she attended a renowned club in the city, the Avenue Dinner Club…the place in which her life changed forever once again.

The Avenue Dinner Club’s owner was a distinguished, intelligent and polite man named Wilson Allan, and he showed quite some interest in the beautiful blonde woman attending his club. Also Doris was attracted to Wilson, and the two started dating. Wilson became Doris’ second husband, and the woman found stability again: the man was also a tender and caring father for Mark, and the three of them were a real family. Not much time passed before Doris was pregnant again: this time she gave birth to a beautiful girl, Elizabeth, and her family became even happier. Doris was proud as Mark became a skilled scientist, and she was also pleased to see that her Liz being among the most popular girls in Midtown High School. She attended Liz’s graduation ceremony along with her husband, and then was pleased to see that she had found a good man to marry in Harry Osborn. Things with Mark didn’t go as well, however, as a lab accident turned him into the super-strong, incandescent and deranged Molten Man. Things, however, would have soon turned tragic for Liz, Harry and their son Normie, and Doris wouldn’t have been able to do anything but to watch as her family crumbled apart…

Doris Raxton Allan is a good and caring woman, a loving mother for her children who likes to be part of their life and to support them. With a failed marriage in her past, she’s done her best to create a new life for herself and her family, and she managed quite well to do so…but life stored too many surprises for the Allans for Doris to counter.

Brian McKeever (Tiny)

The last student spotted in Spider-Man: Homecoming is Tiny McKeever, portrayed on screen by Ethan Dizon. In the movie, he’s the short Asian guy who’s playing chess while Ned Leeds does his best to sneak around in stealth mode, without much success; he also appears at the end, interrupting an emotional moment between Peter Parker and Happy Hogan walking out of the toilet. In the comics, Tiny is pretty different, a bully who torments Peter in high school, who learns to grow up as a different man. Let’s see together.

Brian McKeever was born in an unspecified part of New York City. Not much is known about his family, apart from the fact that his father was a heavy drinker, who was drunk most of the time. Constantly frustrated and unsatisfied with his life, Brian’s father used to vent all his grudge on his son, beating him up as often as he could. Brian, who felt ashamed because of it, never revealed any of it outside his house, and on the opposite he acted cool, becoming a bully and doing to people weaker than him everything his father did to him, a sort of self-defense that was aimed to protect him from the world. Growing up into a bulky and athletic young man, he was nicknamed “Tiny”, and always hanged out with the coolest guys around. When he arrived to Midtown High School it took little for him to emerge from the crowd; it would have been easy for him to become the “top bully” in the food chain, but there was someone fitter than him for the position: Flash Thompson, a guy more handsome, more athletic and more charismatic than he was. In Flash, Tiny recognised a kindred spirit, and even if the two of them never shared words on the secret they hid at home, they both knew they were living the same situation, so they got along quite well, becoming the best of friends. Tiny McKeever accepted to be in Flash’s group, and he followed him as a “leader”, supporting him in all his pranks and in all his adventures, whether it meant chasing after pretty girls or humiliating poor losers and nerds, especially Peter Parker.

Quite ironically, tormenting Peter Parker became a turning point in Tiny McKeever’s life. The more Tiny, Flash and their gang mocked him and humiliated him, the less Peter minded them at all, doing his best not to let the bullies to get under his skin. His strenght and self-confidence was admirable, and Tiny was the first to realise that the scrawny boy with big spectacles had more guts and self-confidence than he or Flash ever had, and he started to respect him. He was quite amused, actually, when he found himself being helped by Peter himself, as he was about to flunk the year and Parker helped him with his homeworks to raise the grades. Obviously, Midtown High had its rules, and Tiny couldn’t show to the others his feelings for the “loser” were different, but when Jason Ionello, another bully from his gang, stole Parker’s clothes when he was to the gym, it was him who chased him and took the clothes back to Peter. Then, his father’s abuses became even worse, as well as his alchoholism, and Tiny was forced to drop school and to find himself a job, being hired at a diner called Goin’ Fast. His life perspective wasn’t exactly rosy, but then something unexpected happened: Spider-Man came battling the Scorcher right where Tiny worked, and he lent a hand to the hero to defeat the pyromaniac villain. Spidey thanked him, and gave him a couple of advices that seemed aimed directly at Tiny, as if the hero knew his personal history. Inspired by Spider-Man, Tiny came back to school, ignoring his father’s demands, and was warmly welcomed by his friends, Flash especially. He managed to finish high school, and he was later hired as security chief at Empire State University. Maybe not as beautiful or popular as he was as a kid, Tiny was nevertheless happy, since he had finally managed to be his own man away from his father’s shadow.

Brian “Tiny” McKeever is a frail and insecure young man, who tries to hide his secret life of abuses and beatings with an attitude reflecting the one of his violent father. More mature than his peers, he’s ready to see through his and others’ appearance, and to change his life for the better with the proper help. The only thing he needs, is someone able to see the “true” Tiny behind the facade he’s built, and to hold out a helping hand to him.

Cobbwell

The last teacher seen in Spider-Man: Homecoming is one seen very briefly, Mr. Cobbwell, portrayed by Tunde Adebimpe. In the movie, he’s spotted during his own class, a lesson Peter doesn’t exactly follow as he’s busy trying a new formula for his webs. In the comics, Cobbwell is quite different: not only he’s much older than Adebimpe’s version and is Caucasian, opposed to the movie’s African American teacher, but he doesn’t even teach in high school (albeit Peter meets him there). A secondary character nevertheless, he’s however at the centre of several misadventures: let’s see together.

Not much is known about Cobbwell’s life, not even his first name. He was possibly born in New York City, what’s for sure is that he lived and worked there. It’s unknown how famous he was as a young man, but as an elder he was a famed electronics expert, always up-to-date with the new technologies, eager to study, understand and replicate the new inventions that day by day made the scientific landscape wider, and of course to contribute to such progress. He was an affirmed and respected member of New York’s scientific community, and once he received a warm recomendation from one of his friends and colleagues, science teacher Raymond Warren, who sent one of his most brilliant students, Peter Parker, to him for an internship. Warren himself introduced Parker to Cobbwell, and the professor was quite impressed with the kid: he offered him to come to his lab on weekends to help him with his experiments, and Peter enthusiastically accepted. The two worked well together, and Cobbwell started trusting the boy. He even let him work on the experiment on his own while he gave lectures at several institutes, and once he asked him to pick a radio from a ridiculously cheap repair shop he had found some days before, Phineas Mason‘s shop. Obviously without suspecting anything, Cobbwell put in motion a series of events that led Spider-Man to battle the criminal genius Tinkerer, all over a repaired radio.

The cooperation between Cobbwell and Peter continued in the best of ways, even if the professor started noticing that some pieces of technology were missing from his lab. His suspicions unfortunately became true when a student from Midtown High SchoolFlash Thompson, informed Principal Davis and Counselor Flannigan that Peter Parker had been stealing things from Cobbwell’s lab. Parker didn’t deny the fact, losing all the faith the professor had in him, even if he tried to apologize. Unbeknownst to Cobbwell, Peter was Spider-Man, and he had used the tech he had “borrowed” from his lab to build an anti-sonic inverter to defeat the supervillain Clash: all he knew was that a student he liked had exploited his trust to steal from him. He refused Peter’s apologies, and asked him to go away. The boy, however, was determined to make amend for what he had done, and he saved money for months in order to collect enough to repay Cobbwell of all the equipment he had taken from him; he finally made it, and came back to the professor’s workshop. Cobbwell, once again, was impressed by the kid, and accepted the check he was giving to him, but he remarked that he wasn’t taking him back as an intern. Peter immediately answered that he wasn’t repaying him having his position back, but just to make things right. Cobbwell approved, but still closed his door on the boy: as glad he could be Parker was trying to make amend, the boy was still a thief, and he wasn’t allowing him near his machinery ever again.

Professor Cobbwell is a cheerful and gentle man, a brilliant scientist who’s always ready to give a hand to young talents. Still passionate for his job and happy for his position, Cobbwell is one of the greatest experts in mechanics around, and a skilled technical engineer. A good man with a well-earned reputation, Cobbwell is a friendly and willing man, whose trust, however, is hard to win back once lost.

Seymour O’Reilly

Nearly every student we see in Spider-Man: Homecoming has a history in the comics, and the skinny guy seen in the gym, the one who believes Spider-Man wears a mask because he’s horribly disfigured, makes no exception. That’s Seymour O’Reilly, portrayed by J. J. Totah. He’s seen just a couple of times as a member of Liz Allan‘s group, and in the comics as well he’s nothing more than a background character, who received a name many issues after his first appearance. The only memorable thing about his entire publication life is his end, the appropriate one for an unberable punk like him: let’s see together.

Seymour O’Reilly was born in QueensNew York City, possibly in Forest Hills. When he was a kid he had many friends, among which Peter Parker: he was even one of Peter’s best friends, attending his eleventh birthday party (one of Peter’s best memories of his childhood)…quite ironic, considering that he became one of Peter’s greatest torments in Midtown High School. As a teenager, in fact, Seymour became, as well as many of his old friends, quite obsessed with popularity, and he chose the easiest way to obtain it: to stick to the most popular, funny and energetic guy in school, Flash Thompson, and to become his “yes man”. When Flash chose the “bookworm” Parker as his favourite target, Seymour turned on his former friend, and started tormenting him, hoping to gain Flash’s approval for it. He didn’t lose an occasion for provoking or taunting Peter, and from making fun of his interest for science to teasing him while other kids beat him, he always had something sharp to say to him…always hidden behind someone else’s back, of course. Obviously, when Flash became the greatest fan of Spider-Man, the new hero in town, Seymour followed him in this new passion, and he was (almost) in the first line cheering for the hero as he battled Sandman in Midtown High’s corridors. Ironically, he mocked Peter Parker (who actually was Spider-Man) immediately after because he ran away from a fight with Flash. His highest moments in life were probably when he organised a prank on Peter, helping Flash to dress as Spider-Man to scare him, and when he obtained an official boxing match between Parker and Flash…even if this one didn’t end exactly like he had imagined.

With Seymour repeating over and over to Flash not to end the fight too quickly, O’Reilly was quite shocked in seeing Parker knocking his hero out with a single punch, but he eventually accused Peter of cheating, accusing him of hitting Flash when he wasn’t even looking, distracted by the havoc created by the Living Computer. All Seymour’s life was limited to school, and all his school’s life was connected to Flash Thompson: his only “evasion” were his fishing trips with his grandfather to Empire Lake. Considering this, it was almost inevitable that he turned out to be nearly the only one from his class to never grow up: even after graduation, he remained the stupid, arrogant bully he had always been. He grew old, he became a grown up man, he got himself a tattoo on his right arm, but he remained a childish prick. During the first reunion of Midtown High School he attended to, he even tried to stick a “Kick me” sign onto someone’s back, with the only result of receiving a well-earned punch to the face. Accomplishing pretty much nothing in life, Seymour kept living as if he was still in high school, mantaining the same attitude and the same social rules, something that became blatant during the following Midtown High reunion. This time, Peter Parker attended along with his wife…the beautiful super-model Mary Jane Watson: this was simply wrong for Seymour’s perspective, and he grew extremely jealous of Parker, who dared to break the social rules he had been living all his life following. He gathered two other bullies of the old times, Charlie and Ernie, to punish him, and tried to give Parker a wedgie, but Peter easily fended them off. His pranks were interrupted by Angelo Fortunato, the new Venom, who broke in wanting to kill Spider-Man…and Seymour saw in amusement as Peter Parker revealed himself as the hero. Before he could even think of telling this to someone else, Seymour had his neck broken by Venom, who used him as a projectile against Spider-Man. A pathetic end for a pathetic man.

Seymour O’Reilly is a mean-spirited young man, a coward who lives as a parasite on other people’s popularity and strenght and who imposes himself only over the weak and defenseless ones. Even as an adult, he’s still the dumb and overbearing bully he was as a kid, a man who lives in the past just because he’s unable to get a real life after high school.